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FICPI, the International Federation of Intellectual Property Attorneys

What is FICPI?

Founded in more than 100 years ago FICPI is the only international IP organisation whose membership consists solely of  intellectual property professionals in private practice. With approximately 5000 members in more than 80 countries and regions, FICPI can rightly claim to be a truly global body, representative of the free profession. FICPI’s members form a prestigious network of intellectual property attorneys of the highest standard. Its members are exceptionally trained, highly motivated and independent in spirit. Many actively contribute to the work of FICPI. Through stringent admission criteria and a code of professional conduct for all of members, FICPI upholds a high level of excellence for the organisation while also striving to maintain the standards of the profession worldwide.

What Does FICPI Do?

FICPI is different. Not only are we interested in the improvement of the laws and treaties that are the foundation of the IP systems, but by virtue of our exclusive membership, FICPI is also the only professional body that truly represents independent IP attorneys at the international level. FICPI ensures that the views of the profession are heard and supports the network of highly skilled and experienced professionals that clients and the IP system require. FICPI meets regularly with the heads and senior officers of the Patent Offices in Europe, Japan, China and the U.S.A., as well as the European Commission, WIPO, WTO and OHIM, with plans to extend these regular meetings to other IP offices. FICPI also meets from time to time with senior officers of other important IP offices. It is essential for the worldwide IP profession to maintain regular contacts with at least the most important national, regional and international IP authorities to ensure that proposals to amend IP laws are practical and are made in the interest of all users. FICPI has a particularly good relationship with WIPO and was the only international organisation invited by the EPO President to attend a workshop on the future fee structure at the EPO and one of only two NGOs to be invited to the Annual Meeting of the Trilateral Partners (JPO, USPTO and OHIM) in Tokyo.

FICPI’s perspective and its influence internationally gives its members, particularly those from smaller countries, a better understanding of and an opportunity to influence developments in the IP world than if standing alone. FICPI has been active in the patent harmonisation process and is one of the very few organisations listened to by the Group B+ countries about substantive harmonisation.

FICPI has stood up for the public interest in developing and maintaining an IP profession throughout the world so that all clients have good access to skilled IP advisers in their own countries.

What Does FICPI Do For You?

Many of FICPI’s efforts are directed to maintaining a strong, independent, local profession in the face of efforts to centralise the filing and prosecution of applications in a small number of national and regional offices. Only an international organisation of the scope and stature of FICPI can represent the interests of the private practitioner before national, regional and international bodies.
FICPI’s ability to speak for all IP attorneys in free practice assists us in achieving our aim to improve the position of individual IP attorneys in all countries.

Without broad international representation of your interests by FICPI, there is a real danger that the interests of IP attorneys in private practice and their clients throughout the world, and indeed the IP attorney profession in general, will fall victim to bureaucratic ambitions and the hegemony of large international business.

How Does FICPI Work?

FICPI works to advance the interests of IP practitioners and their clients through several key commissions (committees).

  • Commission d’Etude et de Travail (CET)
    (Study & Work Commission)
  • Admission Commission (AC)
  • European Union Members Commission of FICPI (EUCOF)
  • Training and Education Commission (TEC)
  • Professional Excellence Commission (PEC)